The trials, which were attended by the National Oceanography Centre (NOC) and Royal Navy personnel, saw the C-Enduro operate autonomously and follow various courses set out by ASV’s control system. The highlight of the two day event came when the vehicle followed a course spelling out ‘ASV’.
The C-Enduro brings a step change in oceanographic data collection, with an endurance of up to three months enabled by its environmentally friendly power structure the vehicle can support up to 500 watts of payload power. The applications for the vehicle are vast, ranging from marine environmental surveying to security and defence roles.
The vehicle was developed under the UK Government-backed Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI). The team behind the development of the LEMUSV, led by ASV, includes Hyperdrive Ltd who investigated motor options and power management systems and Cranfield University who have conducted research into collision avoidance technologies.
ASV undertook the detailed production design, build and commissioning of the fully operational, open ocean going C-Enduro vessel. The robust vehicle design utilises state of the art technologies from the consortium and was designed to operate in coastal or open ocean weather conditions, currents and sea states.
The C-Enduro vehicle centres on a ‘three pillar’ energy system providing a flexible and fault tolerant solution to energy supply. Having researched and trialled various energy sources the team selected solar panels, a wind generator and a lightweight diesel generator. Detailed calculations and tests show that this selection, combined with efficient power management and command and control systems packaged in a rugged self-righting vehicle, provides the greatest likelihood of meeting the performance requirements.